This sign got me thinking… it’s often our own selves that are biggest limiter to growth.
We can be our hardest critic and our worst friend. Every opportunity that presents itself has the potential be a moment of growth. A moment to shine. A lot of times though, we reject those opportunities, and convince ourselves “it just wasn’t for me.” This can be for many reasons but most likely it’s due to self doubt and fear–I am not good enough or someone else will be better at this than me.
But what happens when we allow others to limit our growth? I came across this sign on a bike ride about three years ago. I looked at it and immediately got intimidated. I questioned, do I have the “skill” necessary to enter that trail? I walked over to the jump and immediately got nervous and thought about every potential of failure. I could wreck. I could break something or get really injured. I never really saw any potential that this could be a fun, possible jump for me. The sign erased any potential hope I would try that jump for a long while. When I finally took the jump two years later, seeing it multiple times a month challenging me, it was amazing. I was filled with adrenaline and pride. Then as I calmed down, I realized it was not that hard and tried it again and again. It was actually fun.
And the learning experience didn’t stop there for me. My son saw the sign for the first time and started to build up the same limitations. I then tempted him with a bribe to try it. He started to consider it but was getting ready to back out. I then said I would do it and he could see what it looks like. I did it and he was excited. I told him, “No matter what, do not brake, just go for it.” Braking will cause you to wreck. He went for it and like I told him he did not hold back. He landed the jump with ease (and wiped out afterwards). He didn’t care about wrecking…he was just so excited he landed that jump.
So why did he do a jump in 10 minutes that took me two years to do? Especially when I had more experience riding. It’s pretty simple. Someone believed in him. He had confidence in himself, and any doubt was erased by someone that he trusted as a mentor.
A mentor will get you through the skill filters at light speed.
– Rajesh Khemraj, PT, OCS, COMT, FAAOMPT
Clinical Faculty Instructor at The North American Institute of Orthopaedic Manual Therapy
Rajesh is a Physical Therapist, who is passionate about health and wellness. He is interested in all aspects of general well being including fitness, nutrition and mindfulness. He continues to learn and grow from the profession he loves.